Figure 21 Driving Tab that displays the Drive Screen
Select the Driving tab so that you can choose a locomotive to drive. You must select a locomotive on the driving tab if you
want to drive it and also if you want to adjust its configuration variables on the tuning tab.
Selecting the Locomotive
Figure 22 The Locomotive Drive Selector
Use the locomotive "Drive:" drop-down selector in Figure 22 to select the locomotive that you want to drive. Only available locomotives
are listed. Use the Update button
Figure 23 The Drive Availability Update Button
Use the Update button in Figure 23 to update the available locomotives if you have powered new ones up or reconnected your computer or tablet to your operating network.
Wi-Fi Loco, Wi-Fi/DCC and Wi-Fi DC Loco Technologies
WifiTrax provides three kinds of Wi-Fi Locomotive Control Technologies: Wi-Fi Loco, Wi-Fi/DCC and Wi-Fi DC. Loco Operator may be used to drive locomotives operating under
either of these three methods of control. In fact a single installation of Loco Operator can control two locomotives at a time that may be operating under different technolgies.
The Drive Screen will be configured differently for DCC without speedometer display, but with named DCC function buttons and the option to open a DCC keypad. For DCC, the
Tunings Screen will also be different.
Locomotives fitted with Wi-Fi Loco technology have WifiTrax modules such as WMH-20 or WMR-10 installed and are controlled directly from Wi-Fi.
Locomotives operating with Wi-Fi/DCC technology have DCC Decoders installed and either also contain Wi-Fi/Loco interface modules (such as WDMI-24, WDMI-35 or WDMI-51), or are operating on track powered by a Wi-Fi/DCC Trackside module such as WFD-25.
Locomotives operating with Wi-Fi DC technology are operating on track powered by a Wi-Fi DC Trackside module such as WUFP-47.
Loco Operator can also be used to select certain "Non-Drivable" modules (such as WDMI-61 DCCIP Send Module), but only to allow their Tunings to be adjusted.
Control of Locomotive Lights (Wi-Fi Loco and Wi-Fi DC Technology only)
Figure 24 The Locomotive Light Controls
The Wi-Fi Loco products from WifiTrax provide control of the front and rear lights of the locomotive. Each of these may be in three
states: Off, On and Auto. Off means the light is always off, On means it is always on and Auto means that the front or rear light will come on
if the locomotive is driven in that direction. Tap or click the buttons to move through the three states. The lights can be changed while the locomotive
is in motion.
Control of Locomotive Direction (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 25 The Locomotive Direction Button
Tapping the Direction button switches between forward and backwards. The direction button is disabled while the locomotive is in motion.
For a multiple unit consist, the direction button applies to the entire consist. It will take into account that some locomotives are facing backwards
provided those locos have been set with reverse direction on the consist tab.
Locomotive Driving Mode (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 26 The Driving Mode Button Button
The Driving Mode button can be set to Switching or Main Line. In Switching mode it is possible to control the locomotive more precisely at low speed and the
top speed is limited to about 15 MPH. In Main Line mode, the top speed is as fast as the locomotive can go but there is still a non-linear response at low speeds
to allow for smooth take-offs.
Stop Locomotive (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 27 The Stop Button
The locomotive can be stopped immediately by clicking or tapping the stop button. The stop button can be used any time. There may be a delay of about a second
before the command reaches the locomotive due to network delay. The locomotive will also take time to stop due to its physical momentum - i.e. the momentum of its
flywheels and body mass.
Speed Control (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 28 The Speed Lever
The speed of the locomotive is controlled by the Speed Lever. There are two modes of use. With Auto Drive turned off,
the speed of the locomotive can be changed by sliding the thumb pad up or down. If the thumb pad is moved fully down, the locomotive will stop
completely. As explained in the Locomotive Driving Mode section, the maximum speed will be governed by whether the
locomotive is set to Switching or Main Line.
Tapping the region above or below the thumb pad will cause the speed to be increased or decreased by an amount determined by the
Tap Amount setting in the General page of the Settings tab.
Auto Drive (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 29 The Auto-Drive Button
Auto Drive is a simple feature that allows you to initiate a smooth change of speed of the locomotive. It is turned on or off by clicking or tapping
the Auto Drive button. If you turn Auto Drive on, you can tap or click anywhere on the Tap-Up or Tap-Down region on the Speed Lever and, instead of causing an
incremental speed increase, the tap will cause a Target Rectangle to appear at the location of the tap. The speed of the locomotive will then
gradually increase or decrease towards the target speed. Once the target speed has been reached, the locomotive will stay at that speed. If you tap
right at the bottom of the Tap-Down region the locomotive will slow down and stop. The rate at which the locomotive accelerates or decelerates is determined
by the Tap Amount setting on the General Page of the Settings tab. The higher the Tap Amount, the greater the acceleration or deceleration.
If you wish to take manual control of the locomotive before the Auto Drive action is complete, simply touch or move the thumb pad on the speed lever. Turning off
Auto Drive will also end the Auto Drive action. You may turn Auto Drive on or off while the locomotive is in motion.
Speedometer (Wi-Fi Loco and Wi-Fi DC Technology only)
Figure 30 The Speedometer
The speedometer shows the approximate speed the locomotive is moving in either Miles per Hour (MPH) or Kilometers per Hour. The speed is obtained from the back e.m.f.
generated by the motor, passed through a calibration table to give the speed. The accuracy will depend on the characteristics of the locomotive motor and has been set
at the factory for a typical high quality motor such as those fitted in most new locomotives. We intend to allow the user to adjust this in a later version of this App
as part of the tuning process. You can select MPH or KPH on the General page of the Settings tab.
Telemetry (Wi-Fi Loco and Wi-Fi DC Technology only)
Figure 31 The Telemetry Display
You can switch between Speedometer display and Telemetry display by clicking or tapping the Telemetry button. When the Telemetry display is visible, it shows the
following information which is an indication of how your locomotive is performing:
- MPH - The speed in Miles per Hour
Demand - The requested speed being sent to the locomotive from this App. The demand is like a speed step and is in the range 0 - 1000. So the WifiTrax system
provides a granularity of one part in a thousand - more than you would ever need.
Target Speed - The target speed that the locomotive firmware calculates from the demand. The units are AD N, which is an integer count ranging from 0 to 4095.
For the technical, this is the required output from the 12-bit A/D Converter converting the motor's back e.m.f to a number N.
Measured Speed - The actual speed of the locomotive as measured at the A/D e.m.f. coverter. The units are AD N, which is an integer count ranging from 0 to 4095.
For the technical, this is the actual output from the 12-bit A/D Converter converting the motor's back e.m.f to a number N.
Proportional Range - The speed control algorithm has a feedback term that is proportional to the error between the Target and Measured speed. The amount is different
according to one of three speed ranges (1, 2 and 3). This figure shows the range in which the speed control is operating in.
- Proportional Term - The actual value of the proportional control term generated from the error between the target and measured speed.
- Derivative Term - The speed control algorithm also uses a derivative term, which depends on the rate of change of the error.
Integral Term - The speed control algorithm also uses an integral term. The purpose of this is to gradually include a fixed error correcting
amount so that the proportional term will reduce to zero.
- Duty Cycle - The duty cycle of the pulse width modulated current passing through the motor. When this is 100%, the locomotive can go no faster.
- Keep Alive - The percentage of full voltage available from the power maintenance capacitors. This will drop if you go over dirty track.
- Motor Current - The average current passing through the motor, measured in Amperes.
Current Limit Events - A number representing the number of times the current has been limited during approximately the last second. Current limiting
is a feature available as part of the locomotive tuning.
DCC Named Function Buttons (Wi-Fi/DCC Technology Only)
Figure 32 Named DCC Function Buttons
The DCC named function buttons appear when DCC locomotives are being driven. The buttons displayed depend on the model of DCC decoder selected
as being that installed in the loco. You select the decoder model either after the scan process or at any time on the Locomotives screen
The buttons operate either latching or momentarily according to their definition for the DCC decoder chosen. When Latched, the text within the button shows red.
The Keys button above this display allows entry to the DCC Keypad, which is only accessible in Single Driving Mode.
DCC Keypad (Wi-Fi/DCC Technology Only)
Figure 33 DCC Keypad in Function Mode
The DCC Keypad is displayed by tapping the Keys button above the DCC Named Function Buttons and displays as a numeric keypad with various modes
of operation. It defaults to the Function mode where each key acts in the same way as a DCC function key on a DCC Command Station. You can select F + 10 and F + 20 mode
to send DCC function values higher than 0 - 9. Not all WifiTrax modules support higher than 12.
DCC Operational Mode CV Programming (Wi-Fi/DCC Technology Only)
Figure 34 DCC Keypad in Operational CV Programming Mode
Operational Mode Programming is entered from the DCC Keypad by tapping the OPCV button. Once Operational Mode Programming is entered
this button glows red. In Operation Programming Mode you can program CVs "on the main line" via the NMRA DCC "Configuration Variable Access - Long Form" protocol. This allows
writing of CV values but most DCC decoders do not allow read-back of CVs in this mode and WifiTrax modules do not currently support it. The bottom
line is that you can only write CVs in this mode. DO NOT TRY TO WRITE THE ADDRESS CV (CV #1) IN THIS MODE.
To write a CV:
(1) Tap on the "CV:" button at the top left of the DCC keypad. This clears the CV number textbox to the right of the "CV:" button,
(2) Tap on the numeric keys to supply the CV number required. This is shown in the CV number textbox,
(3) When the CV number is correct, tap on the "Val:" button. This will clear the CV value textbox to the right of the "Val:" button,
(4) Tap on the numeric keys to supply the CV value required. This is shown in the CV value textbox,
(5) Tap the CVW button. A warning dialog will appear. Tap Continue and the new CV value will be written, the value will NOT be read back for confirmation.
DCC Direct Mode CV Programming (Wi-Fi/DCC Technology Only)
Figure 35 DCC Keypad in Direct CV Programming Mode
Direct Mode Programming is entered from the DCC Keypad by tapping the DRCV button. Once Direct Mode Programming is entered,
this button glows red. Direct Mode Programming can only be used when there is only one DCC decoder connected to the outputs of the Wi-Fi/DCC module
that is being driven and programmed. For example Direct Mode Programming can always be used for a loco-mounted Wi-Fi/DCC interface such as WDMI-24, WDMI-35
and the motherboards WDMI-51/52. However for a Trackside Wi-Fi/DCC Interface such as the WFD-25, Direct Mode Programming can only occur on its Programming
Track outputs. Direct Mode Programming is implemented using the NMRA DCC Service Mode Programming protocol.
Once Direct Mode Programming is active, CVs can be read as well as written. For example, in the figure, the CV number 1 has been read to display
the DCC decoder's DCC address which is shown to be 3.
To read a CV:
(1) Tap on the "CV:" button at the top left of the DCC keypad. This clears the CV number textbox,
(2) Tap on the numeric keys to supply the CV number required. This is shown in the CV textbox,
(3) When the CV number is correct, tap on the CVR button. This will read the existing value of the CV from the decoder and display it in the
To write a CV either continue from the read operation or repeat steps (1) and (2), then:
(4) Tap on the Val button. This will clear the Val: textbox,
(5) Tap on the numeric keys to supply the CV value required. This is shown in the Val textbox,
(6) Tap the CVW button. A warning dialog will appear. Tap Continue and the new CV value will be written, then read back and displayed
To exit Direct Mode Programming, tap the DRCV button which will change to black, showing that the programming mode has been exited.
DCC Accessory Operation (Wi-Fi/DCC Technology Only)
Figure 36 DCC Keypad in Accessory Mode
Accessory Mode is entered by tapping the SW button which will change to read indicating that Accessory Mode is active. Accessories can be operated that are connected
to the Main Track DCC output of a Trackside Wi-Fi/DCC module such as the WFD-25. Connected accessories are additional to the sixteen DCC addressed locos
that can be included in the WFD-25 roster and their DCC address space does not overlap with that of locomotives.
Once Accessory Mode is active, switches or other accessories can be operated by using the following sequence.
(1) Tap on the "SW Adr:" button at the top left of the DCC keypad. This clears the Accessory Address textbox to the right of the "SW Adr:" button,
(2) Tap on the numeric keys to supply the Accessory Address required. This is shown in the the Accessory Address textbox,
(3) When the Accessory Address is correct, tap on either the THRW or CLR button. This will throw or clear a switch machine connected as an accessory. Other kinds of accessory will
interpret the THRW or CLR instruction in a manner dependent on their design.
To exit Accessory Mode, tap the SW button which will change to black, showing that the Accessory Mode has been exited.
Dual Driving Mode (All Loco Technologies)
Figure 37 Dual Driving Mode
When the Driving tab is displayed, you can switch between single and dual mode as needed using the Single/Dual button outlined above.
Tap or click once to go to dual mode, then tap or click again to go back to single mode. The part of the screen assigned to each loco will be configured according to the Loco
Technology under which that loco is operating. For instance for Wi-Fi/DCC, the speedometer will be absent and the DCC function buttons displayed
When in dual mode, the driving controls
are duplicated, including the locomotive selector. You can select a different locomotive for each set of controls and drive them
at the same time. There is no restriction on your choice of locomotive except that you cannot choose the same locomotive for both
sets of controls.
The selection on either or both sides can be a multiple unit consist, so you can drive two consists at the same time if you wish.
One restriction is imposed for safety: You cannot go back to single mode if you have a locomotive selected for driving in the right-hand
set of controls. You must deselect the right hand locomotive first. You can switch from single to dual mode while driving a locomotive with
the left-hand set of controls. So you can switch to dual, drive a loco with the right-hand controls for a while, then switch back to single
while continuing to drive with the left hand controls all the time.
In Dual Driving Mode, the setting of the Auto Drive button applies to both sets of controls. You can initiate Auto Drive speed changes
independently but you cannot tap up or down on one while using Auto Drive on the other.